Manju Bhargavi is an actress and dancer, best known for her height (she is 6 feet tall) and performance in the Telugu blockbuster film Shankarabharanam (1979).
Her parents originally hail from Andhra Pradesh but settled in Madras, which was where she was born in 1950. She was originally named Manjula, but later changed it to Manju Bhargavi.
She was trained as a classical dancer and performed at many dance shows. At one of these shows, filmmaker Prakash Rao saw her and cast her in a dance sequence for the Telugu film Gaalipataalu (1974). It led to dance numbers in hit films Krishnaveni (1974) and Yamagola (1978). She was also seen as a vamp in Nayakudu-Vinayakudu opposite ANR. She was then cast in the film President Peramma where she performed a dance number, and then the film's director K. Vishwanath asked her to submit some photographs where she wasn't wearing any make-up. She complied and he liked the results and cast her in the lead role as a unglamorous prostitute and dancer in his next film Shankarabharanam (1979), a film that broke box office records and became a landmark in Telugu cinema. Although, she was very satisfied with the film as it gave her fame and respect, she didn't act in many films after that, choosing to concentrate on her dance shows. Her husband is the son of a retired Chief Secretary. His family is also originally from Andhra Pradesh but later settled in Bangalore, which is where she currently lives. She had twin sons with her husband, but one of her sons died of cancer in 2007. She runs a dance school in Bangalore, and because of that and her dance shows, she doesn't have much time to act in films, taking an occasional role when it fits into her busy schedule. In 2008, she made her Kannada film debut in Hodi Maga playing Shivaraj Kumar's mother.